Because this requires subscription, I brought more than three
paragraphs over. I figured folks probably wouldn't want to
The best question asked about France in a long time -
why a government that recently committed itself to fight
anti-Semitism on its own soil -- and made serious progress
-- would suddenly let the Iranian-backed Hezbollah shape
the views of its 5 million strong Muslim community??
Excellent question. It really is like France is schizophrenic.
Crazy in Paris
WSJ.com; Review and Outlook
December 1, 2004
France has become "totally schizophrenic." That's how Sylvain Attal recently described his government's Middle East policy in the Paris daily
Liberation. He was specifically referring to the French media regulators' decision two weeks ago to grant Hezbollah's TV channel Al Manar a
The word crazy does comes to mind when pondering why any Western government would make a TV channel that calls for the murder of Americans and Jews
available to millions of Muslims. The regulator claimed a really "tough" agreement forbade any kind of incitement. But the same regulator yesterday
asked France's superior administrative court to order the Eutelsat satellite company "to cease transmitting the station" because -- surprise,
surprise -- Al Manar didn't respect its obligation. "Schizophrenic" seems to fit.
For the time being, the mouthpiece of the terror group Hezbollah is still on the air. Nor has the scandal been put to bed. The French media is awash
with rumors, citing anonymous regulatory sources, that the government had been leaning hard on the TV watchdog to give Al Manar the green light in
order to help win the release of the two French hostages in Iraq. Others question why a government that recently committed itself to fight
anti-Semitism on its own soil -- and made serious progress -- would suddenly let the Iranian-backed Hezbollah shape the views of its 5 million strong
As the French snub Iraqi democrats, they nurture the friendship of Arab dictators . Witness, too, the French treatment of Yasser Arafat. Jacques
Chirac eulogized the Palestinian leader without a thought to the countless victims of his terror. The French eagerness to serve radical Arab interests
went even so far as to claim in Arafat's death certificate that he was born in Jerusalem, a lie that Arafat, who was born in Cairo, had carefully
Paris has taken the "pragmatic" view that such pandering would cut it slack with Muslim radicals. In reality it has repeatedly come back to haunt
France. Instead of keeping France "safe" from the Middle East conflict, French hyperbolic criticism of Israel has surely emboldened Arab youths to
attack Jews, thus bringing the conflict to the streets of French cities.
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[edit on 12/2/2004 by FlyersFan]